Cruising the East Coast: Beginning our Cross Country Adventure
Our move to California would not be the same without a little adventure so we set off on a month-long exploration of the US beginning with the East Coast. It is human nature to be in one place and never even get the chance to discover your surroundings. We found this was true for many locals we spoke with in South America. We would regale them with tales of all of the places we had visited in their own country and they would say they regretted not having ever seen them. This was the case for us as well, we had lived on the East Coast for years and never made it north of Philly. So with a strong desire to make our way up the East coast to Maine (which seemed to me to be the final frontier on this side of the US) we were off due north!
Coventry was not on our radar at all when we were planning our voyage but Mystic, Connecticut (where we had originally planned to start) was too pricey. To break up the drive a bit we decided to stop in Coventry for the night and we were glad we did. Our trip began on the right foot with a lovely stay in a converted barn we found on Airbnb. It was nice to get away from the noisy city and the silence of the countryside provided us with a fantastic restful night’s sleep.
Our host Kathleen was welcoming and immediately made us feel right at home. In the morning we enjoyed a delicious breakfast while sitting in the back yard chatting with her. She was quite helpful and showed us places of interest on her atlas where we absolutely had to stop. It was great to get a local’s perspective on the area and learn of all the places off the beaten path.
The house was located next to Nathan Hale Forest and Wangumbaug Lake. During the day we took a scenic drive around the area passing through tall thick trees and stopping for a break at the lake. Feeling well rested and energized we continued on our way.
Providence, Rhode Island
We were headed to Cape Cod for the night but Kathleen insisted we check out Providence on the way. We stopped for a tasty lunch at Providence Coal Fired Pizza before walking around the city. The buildings and alleyways in downtown Providence were incredible and we found ourselves marveling at every turn. One could easily spend a whole afternoon strolling the streets, we were glad to have stopped here. On our way out of the city we took in the views of the Providence River located along India Point Park. This lovely green space was the perfect place to relax before getting back on the road.
Cape Cod, Massachusetts
For some unknown reason I had always dreamt of visiting Cape Cod although I knew nothing about it (Manu likes to think it was because of my unhealthy obsession with the chips). I had always imagined desolate lighthouses at the edge of cliffs being pounded by the sea and endless coastlines just waiting to be discovered. Cape Cod offered all of these things and more, it was an amazing experience to have finally visited this captivating destination.
Shaped like a flexed arm hanging off of Massachusetts, Cape Cod is definitively distinct depending on the area you choose to visit. We researched a bit and most locals agreed that anything past the elbow was quintessential Cape Cod with lots of gorgeous nature to explore. We decided we would spend the night in that area and were lucky to find a great last-minute deal at Viking Shores Motor Inn ($51 with breakfast). Accommodations north of Eastham are very pricey so it is probably a good idea to book a place in advanced when visiting. Our room was simple yet comfortable and clean.
The afternoon we arrived we took Kathleen’s advice and visited the virtually desolate sand dunes at Long Nook Beach. Once we reached the end of the road two massive sand dunes gave way to views of the Atlantic Ocean below us and the seashore that stretched for miles! It was a truly breathtaking sight. For a great view of the sunset over the ocean we headed over to Race Point Beach. Unfortunately for us it was a bit overcast when we visited so we did not get the full effect although we were still able to marvel at the gorgeous colors peeking through the clouds.
Provincetown at the tip of the Cape comes to life at night and is incredibly fun. This quaint town was lovely and while strolling around we felt like we were in a movie set. All of the locals were lively and friendly, we felt a relaxed vibe walking along the main street. For dinner we popped into The Canteen for a traditional lobster roll. We chose to eat this hot, buttery concoction served on a buttered brioche bun (can never have enough butter) … my mouth is watering just thinking about it. As an extra special treat you get 10% off any item from their bakery next door after purchasing a meal.
There are numerous stunning lighthouses around Cape Cod that are worth visiting but we decided to check out Nauset Lighthouse (used as the logo for the Cape Cod chips… the obsession continues). This was the archetypal lighthouse on a cliff that I had always imagined. In fact, ten years ago it was actually rescued from the edge of an eroding cliff and placed further inland. Now this astonishing structure is safe and sound for all to enjoy!
Where we’re headed next:
- Boston, MA
- Portsmouth, NH
- Cape Neddick, ME
- Portland, ME